Tagged: Jon Lester

Saltalamacchia

His last name barely fits on his jersey, he
couldn’t throw the ball back to the pitcher last year, and he’s only hit
twenty-three home runs in his career. Yet, Jarrod Saltalamacchia
 will be catching Josh Beckett, Jon
Lester, John Lackey, Clay Buchholz, and Daisuke Matsuzaka in 2011.



Jarrod Saltalamacchia was drafted by the
Atlanta Braves with the thirty-sixth pick in the 2003 draft, one pick before
Orioles all-star outfielder Adam Jones.

In 2006 with the braves class A
affiliate, the Rome Braves, Salty had his best year of his young career. He hit
.314, with nineteen home runs, and eighty-one runs batted in. After his
breakout season Baseball America ranked Saltalamacchia as the eighteenth best
prospect in Major League Baseball.

The following year, Saltalamacchia became
the starting catcher for the Mississippi Braves (AA). In twenty-two games,
Salty hit .373 with seven big flies.

The same year, in 2007 Saltalamacchia was
called up on his twenty-second birthday after an injury to Brian McCann and
then made his major league debut.

On July 31, 2007, also in the same year, Elvis
Andrus, Neftali Feliz, Matt Harrison, Beau Jones, and Saltalamacchia were
traded to the Texas Rangers for Mark Teixeira and Ron Mahay.

Fast-forward three years latter and
Saltalamacchia was put on the disabled list after the first two games of the
2010 season. He was then sent down to AAA because he couldn’t do one of the
simplest things in baseball. Eventually and thankfully, Salty learned how to
throw the ball back to the pitcher.

On July 31, 2010 Jarrod Saltalamacchia
was traded to the Boston Red Sox in exchange for
Chris McGuiness, Ramon Mendez, a player to be named later (Michael
Thomas), and some money. He was then sent to Pawtucket.

Saltalamacchia was eventually called up after
an injury to Kevin Cash. In his first appearance in the Red Sox starting line
up on August 12, Saltalamacchia went 2-4 with a run scored.

So far, in his time in Bean town, Salty went
just 3-19 (.158), with one RBI, two runs scored, and no home runs. Yet, despite
those stats, the Red Sox are letting Jarrod Saltalamacchia control one of the
best pitching staffs in baseball.

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Pitching Problems?

Thanks guys for making me number nine on the latest leaders list! My dedication will be coming soon.
I planed writing this entry primarily about Josh Beckett’s stupid suspension and Jon Lester’s poor start. But since this morning Dice-K went on the D.L. and Tim Wakefield flirted with history.
Josh Beckett
Josh Beckett Picture

On Easter Sunday Josh Beckett was pitching against the Angels with Bobby Abreu up to bat. After Beckett stood on the mound for about ten seconds Abreu called for time and the umpire granted it for him. As Abreu step out Beckett had just started his wind up and Beckett threw the pitch at Abreu’s head. Abreu played for the Yankees the last few years so that might have come into play. Then the benches cleared.
If Beckett had not thrown the ball and stopped in the middle of his windup there was a chance of injury and no one wants that to happen.
He ended up getting suspended and fined which was just a joke. It is obvious the ball Beckett pitched to Abreu slipped out of his hand. I mean just look at the replays. It slipped! 
If Beckett did mean to hit Abreu in the head he is a jerk. I mean the Angels are going threw though times after the death of Nick Adenhart. I do not know how you could do that. However I still think it was an accident.
When Beckett heard the news he was shocked. Beckett is currently appealing the suspension. Since the lengths of the appeal process takes a while it is very likely that Beckett will still start against the Orioles Saturday.
So it is pretty official unless Bob Watson, vice president of on-field operations for MLB implements the suspension he will be the most hatted man in Red Sox Nation.
Jon Lester


Jon Lester has experienced the ups and downs of his major league carer. Lester has survived cancer and pitched a no-hitter. Yet now Lester might be experience what seems to be the first of his lows.
I am not sure what to think of Lester’s poor start. Is he just not an April guy or is this serious. Was last year just a fluke? I hope not! I doubt it is serious. I mean it is not like Lester has been pitching with a broken arm and I am 100 percent sure that last year was not a fluke. 
Lester never really had a true follow up year after his rookie year due to his cancer and for me last year was like a second rookie year for me. So maybe now Lester is just experiencing a sophomore slump.
In eleven innings this year Lester is zero and two with a 9.00 ERA and has struck out ten. Lester in my opinion did better in his second game but come could argue that he did better. 
In his first game against the Rays Lester pitched five innings and gave up eight hits, five runs, walked two, and struck out five.
In his second game against the Athletics Lester pitched six innings and gave up ten hits, six runs, no walks, and struck out two. Lester is scheduled to pitch on Sunday against the Orioles.
Daisuke Matsuzaka


Dice-K pitched just one inning last night against the A’s and gave up five runs. He ended up leaving the game after the first inning with what appeared to be arm fatigue. We now know he has a strained shoulder which is pretty much just arm a fatigue.
It is possible that this injury was because of pitching in the World baseball Classic. Dice-K pitched a lot for team Japan in the WBC. Japan made it to the finals and won it all again and Dice-K pitched 14.2 innings in three games.
Dice-K was hurt last year and was in Cy Young talks. So I am not nervous
or worried about this injury. If Dice-K did not get hurt he probably would have won twenty games last year.
I looks like Justin Masterson will be Dice-K’s replacement in the rotation. Last night Masterson threw four innings for the Sox. So far this year Masterson is zero and zero with seven strikeouts and a 4.50 ERA.
I am really not worried about Dice-K. The only thing that makes me upset is the fact that he is on my fantasy team and now I have three starters on the D.L.

Tim Wakefield

His vaunted knuckleball was only one weapon Tim Wakefield employed in his eight shutout innings (two hits, six strikeouts).

The Red Sox bullpen needed a day off after Dice-K only pitched one inning yesterday . . . and they did. Tim Wakefield had a no hitter through 7.1 innings till Kurt Suzuki broke it up with a clean single.
Wakefield’s near no-hitter was practically a tribute to Jackie Robinson. He wore 42. He was making his 402 MLB start. He was 42 years old. He gave up 4 hits and 2 runs. He struck out 4 and walked 2. I mean that is pretty crazy.
Of course as soon as I turn on the T.V. I see one out and then the hit. So I am probably one of the most hatted persons in Red Sox Nation. So you guys better not tell anyone about this.
The other day a kid on my baseball team said it was easy to hit a home run off of Tim Wakefield. He was wrong not just about the game but about his whole carer. Wakefield has not given up a big fly so far this year and in 2,870 carer innings pitched Wakefield has give up just 362. Meaning he gives up one home run almost once every eight innings. Okay that is not the best but lets change innings to games. Wakefield has pitched in 543 games. Meaning he gives up one home run every 1.5 game. Okay so maybe he was kind of right.
Wakefiled also showed me. Yesterday I said in the playoffs Jon Smoltz should join the rotation and move Wakefield to the bullpen because more hitters are learning how to hit the knuckleball. Boy, I was wrong!
So Boston we kind of have a problem. Our ace is suspended, our second ace is in a slump, our third ace is hurt, and out forth ace is well awesome!
PHOTO CREDITS
1- zimbo.com
2- baseball.about.com
3- masslive.com
4- boston.com

One Guy Is Out, The Other Gets A Raise

All right no one got this because no one guessed!!! Come on guys. I gave you guys another hit below.

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A-Rod

alex-rodriguez1

All right this was kind of expected. Alex Rodriguez is out for six to nine weeks. Which is about two months. A-Roid will have “hybrid” surgery on his torn hip labrum. No one knows how this happened but it could have been caused by him taking steroids. I mean think of all the bad stuff steroids can do to you. They can cause liver damage, kidney damage, increase your blood pressure, and can weaken your bones. Just look at the diagram.

When you tear your hip labrum I think the femur pops out of the acetabular. I am not one hundred percent sure though. So it is possible that that steroids could have weekend the socket and the femur popped right out. Last year Mike Lowell had this. When he tried to play with it he said it was incredibly painful. So maybe Lowell called up A-Rod and said you should do the surgery. On second thought Lowell would probably never call A-Rod. 

So now the Yankees have a problem. Who will be their starting third baseman? Well they could just use what they have right now. Cody Ransom is very promising. In 43 at bats he hit four home runs last year. Angel Berroa also could get the spot. Last season in 84 games with the Dodgers last year he had sixteen RBI’s and one home run. Knowing how the Yankees operate I doubt that will happen. 

Bobby Crosby

I believe that the Yankees will make a trade, maybe for Bobby Crosby. Crosby was said that he wanted a trade because he would not be the starting shortstop since the A’s signed Orlando Cabrera. Last season with Oakland he hit .237 with seven home runs, 61 RBI’s, and seven stolen bases. Crosby might like New York at first playing for the Yankees. Then though A-Rod would come back and Crosby would become a utility man. I am also not sure that Crosby can handle the New York media. He has only played six major league seasons and Oakland is a lot different then New York. 

The Yankees could also trade for Blake DeWitt. DeWitt also got pushed out of his starting spot after the Dodgers signed Orlando Hudson. Last season was DeWitt’s first and in 117 games he hit .264 with nine home runs, and 52 RBI’s. I am sure DeWitt would like more playing time but I do not think he wants to go to New York. DeWitt is only 23 years old and like Crosby he is to young to handle the media and fans in New York. I mean he might get more coverage then C.C. Sabathia. Imagine how much pressure you would have on you if you were Alex Rodriguez’s replacement.

In 2006, Mark Teahen averaged .290 in 109 games with 18 home runs, 69 runs batted in and 10 stolen bases for the Kansas City Royals before a shoulder injury ended his season in early September. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Probably the most likely trade the Yankees could would be for Mark Teahen. Teahen is mostly a right-fielder but can also play left, third, and second. That could help the Yankees a ton. Sure the Yankees already have to many outfielders but still he is a good utility player. In 2008 Teahen batted .255 with fifteen home runs, 59 RBI’s, and four stolen bases in 149 games. Teahen is about Crosby’s age and Kansas City is a lot different then New York. Still though I have seen Teahen play twice and from what I have seen on the field and in the dugout I believe he could handle the pressures in New York. I do not think it will be the best job handling the pressure gut he van deal with it.

Jon Lester

Jon Lester 2.jpg

Jon Lester apparently has agreed to a five year extension with the Red Sox. The deal is worth $30 million dollars and includes a team-option for 2014 worth $14 million dollars. The deal will become official on Tuesday when he takes his physical. This is why the Red Sox will beat the Yankees this year. Boston cares about chemistry and tries to lock up their young stars. The Yankees do not care about chemistry and if one player who has been with the team for twenty years and is a great influence in the clubhouse, then has one bad season the Yankees will trade him or let him go. Chemistry wins championships not talent. Do not believe me? Go look at team USA from 2006 and then look at this years WBC team. Yah, thats what I though. The Red Sox have signed Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis to long term deals. I love this deal. Lester is my pick to win the American League Cy Young this year. I know people are going to say I am biased but whatever. Lester just turned 25 on January seventh. He has already thrown a no-hitter, survived cancer, won a World Series, and won the 2008 Hutch Award. He also pitched one of the last shutouts at Yankee Stadium.In 2008 Lester had his breakout year going sixteen for six with 152 strikeouts and a 3.21 ERA. One thing is for sure. He has had heck of a carer already. 

********************************************************************************************

All right today’s hint to the question “Who pitched the first no-hitter in baseball history under lights?” Remember that this is the whole history of baseball not just MLB. Also remember that I have know this answer my whole life. Those are some big hints. Anyway today’s hint is he has a common last name and played for the Kansas City Blues and Indianapolis Indians.

Photo Credits

1- revolutionrumblings.wordpress.com

2- hss.edu

3- vivaelbirdos.com

4- pe.com

5- news.bbc.co.uk

6- sportsillustrated.com

7- cbc.ca

8- redsoxgirl46.mlblogs.com

 

Pettitte Stays in Pinstripes, While Varitek is do This Week

Andy Pettitte, 36, signed a one year, $5.5 million dollar deal with the Yankees. The deal could be worth up to $12 million dollars if he reaches all of his incentives. Contracts with incentives are the best contracts, you can’t overpay or underpay a player who has incentives in the contract. Pettitte was 14-14 last season with a 4.54 ERA. He also had 158 strikeouts in 33 games, 204 innings pitched. Pettitte played nine seasons with the Yankees before joining the Houston Astros from 2004-2006 and then went back to the Yankees after the 2006 season. The Yankees rotation is now set to be C.C. Sabathia, A.J. Burnett, Chein-Ming Wang, Pettitte, and then Joba Chamberlain. I think Phil Hughes should be the fifth starter and not Joba. Joba went 3-1 this season as a starter. Joba needs to stay in the bullpen so in a few years when Mariano Rivera retires Joba can become the closer, but I am getting off track. In order for Pettitte to come back on to the roster the Yankees designated Chase Wright for assignment. Wright went 10-3 this season at Double-A and Triple-A

Andy Pettitte

The Red Sox have set a Friday deadline for Jason Varitek. The deal would pay him a base salary of $5 million dollars for 2009 and a club option for 2010 worth $5 million dollars. if he doesn’t make his mind up by Friday Boston would likely trade for a younger catcher, maybe Jarrod Saltamacchia (that was a mouthful), of the Texas Rangers or Miguel Montero, of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Varitek will turn 37 in April. Last season he batted .220, with 13 home runs, and 43 RBI’s. He was backup to Joe Mauer of the Twins in the 2008 All-Star Game , his third all-star game, at Yankee Stadium and caught Jon Lester’s no-hitter.  Varitek will probably start this season and will have Josh Bard or a young catcher as his backup this season and in 2010 will mentor a young catcher. It is also possible that Boston wants a young catcher to catch knuckleballer Tim Wakefield. That is unlikely though because Wakefield is close to retirement. I hope Varitek comes back tomorrow! 


Jason Varitek gives Alex Rodriguez a face full of catcher's mitt, setting off a benches-clearing incident July 24.

I love this picture.

Also I just noticed that in past entries “Varitek” is spelt “Varitex.” Sorry.


Young Guns- Red Sox

This is a new series I like to call, Young Guns. I will look at the youngest, best, and most promising player on each team. This series will not be every day. I could put two up on the same day, zero in a week, or nine in three days. So I’m going to start with the Boston Red Sox.

Dustin Pedroia
Dustin Pedroia is 25 years old. He went to Arizona State. Pedroia was drafted by the Red Sox in the second round with the 65th pick of the draft in 2004. He has a carer batting average of .313, with 27 home runs, 140 RBI’s, 213 hits, and 27 stolen bases. He also has a .989 fielding percentage at second base (his primary position) and shortstop. In 2007 Peedie won a World Series Ring and a Rookie of the Year trophy. That season Pedroia batted .317, with 50 RBI’s, eight home runs, 165 hits, and seven stolen bases. In the postseason he batted .283, with two home runs, ten RBI’s, and 17 hits. In 2008 Pedroia started at second base in the 2008 All Star Game at Yankee Stadium. In 2008 he batted .326, with 17 home runs, 83 RBI’s, 213 hits, and 20 stolen bases. That year Pedroia won a golden glove, a silver slugger, and the 2008 A.L. MVP. In the playoffs he batted .233, with three home runs, ten hits, two stolen bases, and six RBI’s. Pedroia carer postseason stats are a .262 batting average, five home runs, 27 hits, two stolen bases, and 16 RBI’s. Pedroia is a great guy in the clubhouse. he is very cocky saying stuff like, “Strongest 180 pounder in the league.” He and Red Sox manager, Terry Francona play games of cribbage in the clubhouse on road games. Click here to learn more about cribbage. Pedroia doesn’t have the body of a baseball player at all. He weighs 180 pounds and is five foot nine inches. Did you know that Pedroia is the nephew of Phil Snow, the Detroit Lions linebacker? On January 9, 2009, Pedroia was named cover guy for MLB 09: The Show. This offseason Pedroia signed a six year, $40.5 million dollar contract. Pedroia will have a great carer and maybe will 100% make it in to the hall of fame. I think Pedroia will get 3,000 hits.
Dustin_Pedroia_Photo2_mid.jpg
Dustin_pedroia


Honorable Mentions

2.Jon Lester
3.Jonathan Papelbon
4.Jason Bay 
5.Kevin Youkilis
6.Jacoby Ellsbury
7.Justin Masterson
8.Jed Lowrie


Glavine to Boston?!?

Tom Glavine a low risk high reward player said he felt good after throwing of the mound for the first time since elbow and shoulder surgery in August. Glavine is a local guy according to Julia (Julia your “dream” came true) over at Julia’s Rants. Glavine’s longtime teammate John Smoltz recently signed with the Red Sox. Glavine, a free agent, made thirteen starts last season. He went two and four, with 37 strikeouts, and a ERA 5.54. Tom Glavine is 42 years old. Glavine is a sure first ballot hall of famer he has 305 carer wins, an ERA of 3.54, and has 2,607 strikeouts. Glavine has played twenty-two seasons with the Braves on two different occasions and the New York Mets. He has won twenty games five times. While Glavine is a great player and I am sure he would love to go to the Red Sox, but Boston already has eight starters in Josh Beckett, Jon Lester, Dice-K, Tim Wakefield, Brad Penny, Smoltz, Clay Buchholz, and Michael Bowden. Smoltz though could come out of the bullpen and I think Clay could too. As for Bowden he’ll come up from AAA in mid-season. He would probably cost a around the amount of Smoltz and is better. Am I saying that I would rather have Glavine then Smoltz? No, Smoltz will not pitch till June but he can be a starter or come out of the bullpen which I wish every pitcher could. Glavine will should sign with a team with young pitchers, the Rays, Twins, A’s, D-Backs, Reds, Pirates, Brewers, Nationals, Marlins, or maybe even the Padres. he also could resign with the Braves who have signed Derek Lowe and Kenshin Kawakami. The Braves also traded for former Chicago White Sox, Javier Vazquez. Vazquez is listed as the Braves ace on Braves.com don’t get that one. I would put my money on the Brewers or the Braves. The Brewers lost C.C. Sabathia to the Yankees. Ben Sheets, the other Brewers ace is still on the market. One game I would love to see, Red Sox vs. Brewers, Jon Smoltz vs. Tom Glavine, at Fenway Park. 

Tom Glavine (left) John Smoltz (center) Greg Maddux (right)

Former Met Tom Glavine retired the final 17 batters he faced during the Braves' 6-1 win in the first game of a day-night doubleheader today.





Progress With Varitex

First- Manny and the Dodgers are still just talking.

Second- Carlos Zambrano has to get LASIK eye surgery on his right eye.
Third- Tom Glavine threw of the mound for the first time since shoulder and elbow surgery. Glavine, a free agent, is a low risk high reward player. I think he could come to Boston because of that and his long time teammate, Jon Smoltz signed with the Red Sox. More on that soon.
Third- After the San Diego Padres signed David Eckstein the Texas Rangers want Omar Vizquel.
Forth- Just a quick shout out to got milb? and District Boy who made my link list.
Jason Varitex wants to stay in Boston and the Red Sox want him back. Jason Varitex meet with Red Sox owner John Henry, The meeting was requested by Varitex. They spoke one on one for 90 minutes. Varitex said that the meeting was “okay” as he put it. Varitex could have been lying because maybe he didn’t want the media to know about something. Henry had no comment. They meeting was just Henry and Varitex so that means Scott Boras, Teo Epstein, or any one else. Varitex, a switch hitter, turns 37 in April. Varitex hit .220, with 13 home runs, and drove in 43. He also threw out 16 runners and caught Jon Lester’s no hitter. Varitex managed to make the all-star game last season as the back up catcher. The Red Sox signed catcher Josh Bard this month. They also let knuckle ball catcher, Kevin Cash leave. Cash then signed with the New York Yankees. Varitex has been with the Red Sox for twelve seasons. Derek Lowe, who recently signed with the Atlanta Braves, and Varitex were traded from the Seattle Mariners to the Red Sox in 1997. In 2002 Varitex caught Derek Lowe’s no hitter. Both had great seasons with the Red Sox. I hope Varitex comes back to Boston. I mean what other catcher has caught four no hitters? No one. Yes, he is getting old and he had a down year last season but he is a Red Sox legend. The city of Boston loves Varitex. Having Varitex go would be like Johnny Damon going to the Yankees. Okay, that was a little to dramatic. So Mr. Varitex if your reading this right now come back to Boston.
Clockwise from top left) Jason Varitek has been behind the plate for gems by Hideo Nomo, Derek Lowe, Clay Buchholz and now Jon Lester.


Top Left- Hideo Nomo’s no hitter in 2001.

Top Right- Derek Lowe’s no hitter in 2002.

Bottom Right- Clay Buchholz’s no hitter in 2007.

Bottom Left- Jon Lester’s no hitter in 2008.





Jason Varitek gives Alex Rodriguez a face full of catcher's mitt, setting off a benches-clearing incident July 24.

Varitex stands up for the Red Sox, I mean no glove no love.